Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Obituary: Vincent J. Colletti - Class of 1927

MADISON - Vincent J. Colletti, age 98, passed away on Sunday, March 25, 2007, at the home of his sister and brother-in-law, Mamie and Lee Stafford. Vince was born on May 11, 1908, in Piana di Greci, Sicily, the son of Domenica (Capaci) and George Colletti. The family immigrated to the United States when Vince was one year old, settling first in New Orleans, and then the Green Bush area in Madison. After graduating from Central High School, he began studies at the University of Wisconsin in the field of engineering, where he was an active member of the UW rowing team. His studies were halted two years later when his father passed away at a young age. Vince, the oldest of eight children, quit college to help care for his mother and siblings. Vince married Florence McAusland on Aug. 12, 1940. She predeceased him in 2004. Vince served in the U.S. Army during World War II, and was stationed in North Africa, Italy and India, where he helped to design and construct air strips for U.S. troops. He held many different jobs as a young man, and worked the majority of his adult life as a surveyor for the Dane County Highway Department. Vince was a handyman, dedicated gardener, a master story teller and avid fisherman, who was known to fish most days of the year. Fresh vegetables and fish were plentiful on all of our dinner tables (accompanied by stories, of course). He was a member of the Local V.F.W. club, and the Italian Workman's Club. Though Vince and Florence never had children of their own, he had numerous nieces and nephews, many of whom have kept very close contact over the years. He also volunteered his time to the youth of Madison as a Boy Scout leader. His mission in life was to serve his family, and he did that with honor. Vince is survived by his sister, Mamie Stafford (husband Lee, and children Tom, Jim, Donica, Sue and Bill); brother, Peter (wife Rosalie, and children Laurel and Linda); and brother, Joe Colletti (wife Lorraine, and children Joe, Janie, Gary, Holly and Patty). He was predeceased by his parents; his wife; sister, Mary Novick (survived by son Jon); sister, Ann Ledin and husband Victor; brother, George Colletti and wife Josephine Clementi Colletti (survived by sons George and John, and daughter Judy); and brother, Vito, who lost his life in battle in France during World War II. He was also predeceased by his sister-in-law, Lorraine (Peter) Colletti; nephew, Victor Ledin; and niece, Bonnie Colletti. Visitation will be held on Wednesday, March 28, 2007, at CRESS FUNERAL HOME, 3610 Speedway Road, from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m., with a short service at 6:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Hospice in Vince's name. Vince, you gave so much to all us over your almost 99 years, we were so glad to be able to give back to you. Thank you to Mamie and Lee Stafford, and Joe and Lorraine Colletti for opening your homes to Vincent over the last few years. Our memories will remain forever. Cress Funeral and Cremation Service 3610 Speedway Road (608) 238-3434

Originally published in the Wisconsn State Journal on March 27, 2007

Note: Vincent Colletti's class year based on information in the 1924 Tychoberahn, which lists him among the 9A students (freshmen expected to graduate in 1927).

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